PC Gamer

Alone on a dark desert hillside, a soldier lies prone in a patch of scrub brush. In the distance down the hill, a black shape moves forward. Spotting his chance, the soldier pops up and hurls a grenade. He s about to go for this, a commentator says, calling the play-by-play for online viewers. But he's revealed his position too soon, and midway through his grenade throw, the lone soldier is interrupted by a burst of machine gun fire. The audience watches him fall as the momentum of the battle shifts.

The world of esports is growing fast, and broadcast matches like this one happen every day. But what s special about this match is that it didn t take place in Counter-Strike: it was played in SOCOM: Source, a remastering of 2002 PlayStation 2 exclusive SOCOM. With Insurgency as the base for now, a small group of fans is modding in SOCOM s third-person perspective and crosshairs, rebuilding classic maps, modeling classic characters, and writing logic for their favorite game modes.

Ever since SOCOM 2, I ve always wanted to see a remastered SOCOM, the mod creator, Redline, told PC Gamer. The 26-year-old freelance programmer from Chicago has pursued it as a side project. I know a lot of people who always wanted that, too. A little over a year ago, I finally decided to do something about it. Anyone in this community, you could ask them: What would you do if you won the lottery? For a lot of us, it would be, first, I would fund a SOCOM game. These guys are very passionate.

How did a PlayStation 2 game come to be reborn as a mod for an indie shooter on Steam? The project began as a mod for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Redline had never modded games before, but he decided to learn and bring back his childhood favorite. When I was a kid, I got high speed internet, so I went out and bought a high-speed game: it was SOCOM. I played it nonstop. I skipped school to play it.

As one of the first games to demand modern internet speeds, SOCOM introduced a lot of staples of online gaming. Matchmaking and lobbies were new concepts at the time. In 2002, though, PlayStation 2 consoles didn t have a way to support online communities. Websites sprang up to organize tournaments and connect people, and a competitive scene grew around these third-person action games. These sites didn t have a way to talk directly to players consoles, so players had to sign on and report the results from any organized match manually.

New players send him messages that read like they ve found the promised land. A few claim to be moved to tears.

After SOCOM 2 in 2003, the series changed direction. The small squads and special forces missions were replaced in 2005 with vehicle combat and other changes that turned away the hardcore group as SOCOM sought the broader appeal enjoyed by games like Battlefield. The community that had formed around the games eventually evaporated. Millions of copies of the game were sold on PS2 and PS3, but servers running the online game modes were finally taken offline in 2012. No SOCOM game has been announced since 2011 s SOCOM 4, which lost its servers in January 2014. As far as anyone knows, the SOCOM series is dead.

After Redline began his project, word spread and the community started to come back. Within a week of launching, he had 1,500 subscriptions. As the mod grew, it switched from being a Counter-Strike mod to an Insurgency mod, a move that gave Redline a better base to work from. New players send him messages that read like they ve found the promised land. A few claim to be moved to tears. One player told PC Gamer that he s seen lifelong console gamers build or buy a PC just to play SOCOM online again.

Redline is doing all the programming himself, while a few community members volunteer their time to help with modeling and level design. This entire operation is fueled by a love for SOCOM. Everyone works on this and puts in more hours than most people actually think, and they do it just because they want this game back so badly, Redline says. We get absolutely nothing else in return. In fact, some of us put our own money up to keep it going when donations don't come in.

Tobias Str mb ck, a SOCOM player from Sweden, is a big fan of the mod and the community that has resurfaced around it. Our community and the developer all are very passionate about the mod, he said. We all want a great SOCOM game. It's an actual community. People know each other, for better or worse. But we all want the same thing... Joining a server sometimes gives me the feel of walking into the onto the schoolyard where my buddies are hanging out.

It s becoming a big schoolyard. 10,000 unique players have logged on since March. Online matches have tallied up 37,000 hours. Over 7.7 million shots have been fired. Another player, Josh, calls the game magical. I always tell friends about this mod, he said. I think the biggest issue is some hardcore fans died with the game when the servers were taken down on the PlayStation network.

Right now, the mod is moving through alpha and approaching a beta release early next year. The biggest change, the switch in perspective from first person to third person, is in place and stable. The coming weeks will see new competitive features and more maps added. At the mechanical level, though, the game already feels like SOCOM. It is the [mod] on the market that is the closest to the original SOCOM games, Mike, one of the active community members, told PC Gamer. A few more tweaks to the gameplay, mainly the animations, and this mod will be as true to original SOCOM gameplay.

Eventually, Redline hopes to port the entire project over to the Source 2 development kit and create a free, standalone game called SOCOM: Source. For now, he's continuing to build his new SOCOM community, adding clan support, tournament ladders, and all of the other tools that didn t exist when the PS2 had its day. This is the way to get the gameplay back, he says. There s determination in his voice. But [the community] is the bigger picture. We can t just keep playing the same maps for the rest of our lives.  

Building the community, Redline thinks, will let them bring the same structure to other games as well. I never got into the competitive CS:GO experience because I know that I don t like it. I don t want that, I want to get the SOCOM feel back. I m a PC gamer, but I want to bring back the console multiplayer community experience.

Community Announcements - Mikee
We are releasing a hot-fix today to resolve several bugs and exploits. Change list below:

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed exploit in Push that allowed players to roam around freely in restricted areas.
  • Human players are spawned instantly after a capture in Conquer to prevent issues where players didn’t spawn because the capture zone became contested.
  • Reduced bandwidth usage slightly during highly populated games.
  • Fixed a server crash when a bot had no weapon.
  • Possible fix for a server crash relating to spectator.

  • Updated M9 texture.
  • Fixed broken bolt on the animations for the M4A1 and M16A4.

  • Buhriz: Clipped roofs on several buildings
Community Announcements - Argyll
We are releasing a patch today with various improvements and bug fixes. In addition to addressing an exploit in Push, we have greatly enhanced AI behavior, added functionality to the map cycle user interface in the Solo menu, and more. Find the full change list below:

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed being able to destroy the last stand cache on Push before all objectives were captured.
  • Fixed human players not spawning in Conquer after a point capture.
  • Fixed Humble Bundle achievement.
  • Reduced instances of spawning at the origin for modes that use nav spawning.
  • Fixed being able to detonate C4 and IEDs in spawn zones.
  • Being in a block zone as it is enabled should now correctly restrict the player.
  • Fixed round timer label being cut off in Survival once level reached double digits.
  • Fixed map preview images being affected by texture quality setting.
  • Fixed model on main menu not showing the weapon model after disconnecting from a server.
Gameplay Improvements
  • Once you are dead while playing with friendly AI, you can take them over by spectating a bot and pressing the use key.
  • Updated the ragdoll code to hopefully reduce instances of ragdolls jumping in the air on death.
  • When a weapon becomes restricted in a restricted area, explosive priming will be cancelled when grenade is not cooking.
  • Bot AI:
    • Improved combat decision-making.
    • Bots will now more regularly investigate gunshots and nearby footsteps.
    • Updated night-time vision so bots can’t see you as easily in the dark.
    • Friendly AI in Solo now use formations and move to cover if they come under fire.
    • Added an element of randomness to the patrol behavior.
    • Fixed combat and investigation behavior loops.
    • Fixed bugs with stance system.
  • Hunt:
    • Increased patrol radius around the active cache, so enemy AI spreads around the map better.
    • When the enemy cache is destroyed the enemy will more successfully investigate the blown up cache minimizing the need to search around the map for the remaining enemies.
    • Fixed VO in Hunt saying that the wrong amount of enemies are killed.
    • Reduced enemy count to 15 in Solo mode (this can be adjusted with the console variable “ins_ins_bot_count_hunt_solo”).
  • Checkpoint:
    • Increased minimum bot count in Checkpoint so that there are more enemies with smaller player counts (the minimum is now 8 instead of 5).
  • Survival:
    • Improved AI patrolling behavior.
    • Improved cache selection.
    • M9 increased to 1 supply.
    • Maximum rounds set to 3 by default.
User Experience Improvements
  • Improved usability for changing the map cycle in the Solo menu
    • Added drag/drop support
    • Added clear/reset mapcycle buttons
    • Each playlist map cycle state is saved between sessions.
  • Connecting to a Workshop enabled server will only download the map currently running.
  • For XInput controllers (eg. Xbox 360 controller), the right thumbstick now emulates mouse input so much more of the UI is usable with a controller.
  • Removed prop caches from the last stand area in Push.
  • Spectator glows now render in the scope when spectating a player aiming down sights with a scope.
  • Spectator glows now factor in weapon upgrades.
  • Spectator mode now shows the player name in the squad color (green) if that person is in your squad.
  • Added keyboard hints to spectator mode.
  • Added titles to each options screen.
  • Disabled developer console spam on Mac/Linux when no controllers were detected.
  • Updated Sterling, M4A1 and M16A4 animations.
  • Updated L1A1 material.
  • Updated Training level.
  • Any cvars in a map txt will be reverted to default on map change. This should fix Hunt maps using static spawns after a Hunt map with navmesh spawns is played.
  • Since block zones and spawn zones can no longer be marked as solid, a func_teamblocker entity has been added if a mapper wishes to create a wall players of a certain team can’t pass through.
  • Due to changes with the blockzones code, “disablespawns” is enabled by default when not defined.
Map Changes
  • Updated block zone placement on many maps.
  • Contact:
    • Moved Outpost cache positions.
    • Updated prop fade distances and collision.
    • Added missing clips to stairs to smooth them out.
    • Fixed a small displacement seam behind the center building.
  • Embassy:
    • Moved a Humvee from Security side to the Insurgent side.
    • Fixed spawning on the flagpole in Survival.
  • Kandagal:
    • Fixed a bunch of clipping issues.
    • Fixed a displacement seam.
    • Fixed misaligned brick texture.
    • Fixed floating window frame.
    • Updated ambient sounds.
  • Uprising:
    • Added missing clips to stairs to smooth them out.
Community Announcements - Mikee

We are livestreaming today, Saturday November 7th, at 3:00 pm EST with custom mapmaker R-C-MAN and his maps Miransh, Hurtlocker, and Warehouse. You can watch here.

R-C-MAN has been mapmaking in Insurgency for some time, and is ready to show off the first iteration of his latest map Miransh. Miransh features Conquer, Insurgency’s latest official coop mode. We’ll also be checking out R-C-MAN’s other maps Hurtlocker and Warehouse (seen below).

R-C-MAN’s server “Hurtlocker1” has an increased bot count, bumped up supply, and many other custom coop and official coop maps in its rotation. If you’re interested in joining us, join the IP here: The server is always up and open, but for the stream it will be passworded, and the password will be given in the stream chat if you want to join us.

Let R-C-MAN know if you have any questions about custom mapmaking and how to get started. And as always, I’ll be happy to answer any questions in the stream about Insurgency.
Community Announcements - JBlum
We are releasing a patch today to address some issues with our previous update, improve gameplay, and expand upon the Solo menu.

For those of you who enjoy playing Solo, we have added AI teammates to Conquer and Hunt in Solo menu. You can now play these modes as if they are singleplayer missions. If you die, you take over one of your alive AI teammates instead of waiting.

We will continue to update and expand upon this mode, as we integrate it with the radial menu so you can command and interact with your subordinate AI. For now, we present our first follow up patch with more to come in the near future. Full changelist below:

New Features
  • Added native support for Steam Controllers.
  • Expanded Solo menu to include three categories: Tutorials, Cooperative Modes and Multiplayer Modes.
    • Tutorials includes the training map and in the future other tutorials may be added.
    • Cooperative Modes include Conquer and Hunt, which can now be played with AI teammates.
    • Multiplayer Modes include offline practice for multiplayer modes which are currently supported by our new AI, which include Push, Firefight, Skirmish and Occupy.

Stability Fixes
  • Fixed a Windows 10 startup issue.
  • Fixed crash at the end of Training Warehouse.
  • Fixed crash when opening the inventory after changing graphics settings.
  • Potentially fixed a crash when exiting to menu or changing level due to workshop player skins. If you still experience this, please report it to us.

Gameplay Improvements
  • Improved Conquer spawn protection when spawning in on an objective. Now even if you shoot after just spawning in you will still receive spawn protection for 5 seconds.
  • Added bot spawn settings specifically for the start of a round, so that bots don’t spawn too close to where players spawn initially. Settings are adjusted on a per-map basis so that larger maps have different settings than smaller ones.
  • Survival gameplay tweaks to increase difficulty.
  • Fixed an unintended adjustment made to jumping from addressing some exploits.
  • Updated weapon availability and cost on various classes in both PvP and coop.
  • Tweaked headshot audio based on feedback, lowering the volume and only playing the sound locally if the shot killed you.
  • Insurgent VIP now has Makarov with extended magazines. Security VIP still has M9.
  • Round will no longer restart when changing bot difficulty in coop.

Bug Fixes
  • Due to problems with some server providers, map .txt scripts are now placed inside insurgency_misc.vpk. This resolves map issues some servers were having where Verticality Push and coop modes were unplayable.
  • Players will no longer get stuck transitioning to a higher stance. This was particularly noticeable on the helicopter in Market when transitioning from prone to stand.
  • Fixed exploit with smoke grenades.
  • Spectator X-Ray will no longer show when in the dying state.
  • Fixed weight bar not flashing when a purchase fails.
  • Grenades no longer collide with their owning player.
  • Fixed hero cap VO playing at improper times.
  • HQ voice over now plays properly in Conquer when destroying a cache.
  • Model 10 shells now load properly using a speed loader.
  • Fixed jiggle bone on M1A1.
  • Removed duplicate fire and cocking animations for shotguns. This should fix a rare bug that would cause the animations to play twice, as well as the muzzle flash, sounds and shell ejections.
  • Fixed incorrect syntax in insurgency.fgd.

Weapons and Upgrades
  • Added Galil SAR variant for Security team.
  • Added third person reloads for the Sterling SMG and fixed other various animations for it.
  • Added world model foregrips for Security team. These will eventually be added for Insurgents as well.
  • New world models for Galil rifle variants and Model 10.

  • Added a Halloween surprise.
  • Updated Uprising Conquer layout.
  • Fixed cache locations on certain Conquer maps.
  • Added destructible jugs to go with destructible pots. (game changer)
  • Radios now break with three shots instead of four.
  • Fixed broken environment art on Contact.
  • Fixed displacement issues on Kandagal.
  • Fixed missing reeds on Kandagal Night.
  • Increased fade distance for several vehicles on the long road in Sinjar.

User Experience
  • Improved font sizing at low resolutions.
  • Fixed issues with menu navigation.
  • Fixed server search UI panel overlapping the party/friends section.
  • Party list on the menu now takes up the whole box.
  • Updated Ukrainian and Polish translations.
  • Fixed the loading screen gamemode description being cut off.

Thanks, and enjoy! :security:
Community Announcements - Mikee

We are livestreaming today, Saturday October 31st, at 3:00 pm EST with Insurgency’s 3D artists who created the new weapons in our recent update. A patch release for Halloween is also imminent. You can watch here.

We released an update to Insurgency just a few days ago with a ton of free content, including Linux support, Conquer coop mode, new weapons, and more. We are streaming today with Nik Sumnall, Drew Watts, and Ben Turtell (also known as MrBrightside on the Workshop). We’ll be discussing modeling, animating, and the work that went into this update’s new weapons: the Galil assault rifle, Sterling SMG, Model 10 revolver, and remodels of the M1 Carbine and L1A1 SLR.

Check out our roadmap to see what made it into the update and what’s to come. As always, I’ll be happy to answer any questions in the stream about Insurgency.
Community Announcements - Mikee

This update includes a new map, Linux support, new weapons, a new coop game mode, new AI, spectator improvements, grenade launcher sights, and more.

This update will be a large download because we have reworked our coop maps and merged them into our main maps. This means we now have support for Outpost Night, Hunt Day, Survival Day. There are now over three times the amount of cooperative scenarios, and the game takes up 1.5 gigabytes less space.

Insurgency is also being featured in the latest Humble Bundle. If you are interested in further supporting us, you can donate to the bundle and select “Developers” and then “Insurgency” in the sliders below.

New Engine Features
  • SteamOS and Linux support
  • Added official Steam Controller profile

New Game Features
  • New Conquer Cooperative mode. Secure and hold three objectives, while seeking out enemy weapon caches to cripple their supply.
  • New navigation mesh spawning system allowing the game to have three times more coop scenarios while reducing the game by 1.5gb on your hard drive. New coop scenarios which were previously not supported include Conquer (day and night), Hunt (day), Outpost (night) and Survival (day).
  • All new AI behaviors including use of cover, retreating, weapon based stances, bipod usage, pistol swap, arousal system; improved combat logic, use of grenades and targeting system
  • New environment interaction features including sprinklers, breakable radios, cash registers, breakable pots, improved breakable vehicle windows.

New Maps
  • Kandagal.
  • Layout for Contact expanded, with day and night versions.

Weapons and Upgrades
  • Galil assault rifle.
  • Sterling sub machine gun.
  • Model 10 revolver.
  • Grenade launcher sights.
  • Extended magazines.
  • Updated M1 Carbine & L1A1 SLR models.
  • Updated first person pistol animations.
  • New M4A1, M16A4 & MK18 first person animations.
  • New Grenade, Molotov, C4 & IED first person animations.
  • 7x scope is now available on the M16A4 for the designated marksman.

Gameplay Improvements
  • Extended grenade functionality:
    • With cookable grenades, left click will release the spoon on the grenade and will start cooking immediately.
    • Right click will prime a grenade without cooking and the left mouse button can be used to start cooking.
    • Middle mouse button will prime a lob without cooking. Clicking either the left or right mouse button will begin cooking.
  • New C4 “plant” function.
    • Holding right click will stick the C4 to a surface you’re looking at if you’re close enough.
  • Improved blinding effect of flashbangs, they will also suppress enemies who are blinded.
  • New headshot sounds.
  • Updated Classic cooperative playlist’s starting supply and enemy strength to be more of a mid-way point between Elite and Hardcore.
  • New burned and blown-up skins for players who get killed in the corresponding way.
  • Laser sights and flashlights can now be used when using the underbarrel grenade launcher.
  • Lowered arm distance on launched smoke grenades.
  • Laser sight is now shown during the weapon draw animation.
  • Allow getting up from prone in water. In some rare occurrences a player could be stuck in prone underwater.

User Experience
  • Redesigned menu user interface
    • New Community menu featuring Insurgency social networks
    • New Help menu for customer support, mod making, and guides.
    • New Solo menu for creating offline games against bots.
    • Note: This is just the first small step towards overhauling all menus.
  • Improved in-game controller support:
    • Controller-specific recoil handling to make it more manageable.
    • Added bindable combined actions:
      • +stance: Press to toggle crouch, hold to prone.
      • +usereload: Press to reload, hold to use.
      • toggleprimarysecondary, togglemeleeexplosives for switching between those two weapon slots.
      • Updated default Xbox 360 controller binds.
  • Objective dock on the bottom of the screen better highlights the objective you are in.
  • When switching to a weapon or gear item that would otherwise put you over the weight limit, the previous item in the same slot is no longer sold when the purchase is denied.
  • Insurgent weapons now use the Security-style suppressors in coop.
  • End-game map voting now shuffles the map selection by default. Server admins can revert to the old behavior by setting sv_map_voting_shuffle to 0.
  • Added server cvar sv_alltalk_intermission so all talk at the start of the game and between rounds can be disabled (disabled by default in the Competitive Match theater).
  • Added server cvar sv_alltalk_endgame for doing the same when the game ends.
  • Workshop menu is now sorted alphabetically, separates published and subscribed files and is a lot more responsive.

Spectating features
  • Added x-ray overlay which can be toggled with the firemode key (default X).
  • Camera smoothing for the free fly spectator camera, disabed by default. To enable it enter the following commands. The amount of smoothing is configurable for every setting and the maximum banking angle can be adjust as well using spec_bank_angle (negative values make it bank in the other direction)
    • spec_interpolate 1 (smooths mouse movement)
    • spec_interpolate_position 1 (smooths out camera position changes)
    • spec_bank 1 (enables yaw-based camera roll)

Stability Improvements
  • Replaced Chromium HTML implementation with the one provided by Steam. This should resolve an issue that a limited number of users were having where the game would freeze on exit.

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed crouch and stand transitions when leaning.
  • Fixed grenade launcher not being dropped when a weapon with a grenade launcher was swapped with another.
  • Firefight will now trigger the hero cap voice over.

Full changelist here. And check out our official roadmap to see what's in store for the future.

Enjoy, we'll see you in the servers. ːsecurityː
Community Announcements - Mikee

We are livestreaming today, Saturday October 24th, at 3:00 pm EST checking out Insurgency’s upcoming map Kandagal on the beta branch. You can watch here.

Kandagal was made by Brian “LATTEH” Birnbaum as a submission for our community map contest last year. It will now be an official map ingame. It currently supports Skirmish, Push, Firefight, Occupy, and Conquer game modes. Brian will be sitting in with us on the stream to answer questions and take feedback on his map. Kandagal is still in testing stages as you can see on our roadmap under the QA list, so give us your feedback on the official forums and chime in in the stream chat.

We will also be testing an overhaul of our map Contact today. Level designer Jeroen Van Werkhoven will also be in the stream talking about his redesign.

Feel free to download the beta branch and join us in testing the game.

As always, I’ll be happy to answer any questions in the stream about Insurgency. ːsecurityː
Community Announcements - Mikee

The ESL 5v5 Firefight Autumn Season 2015 - Open League will start on November 2nd 2015.

This league will be open for every team around the world, no matter the skill level. ESL plans to open multiple regional divisions/groups. There will be an Open League available to all. Each team has a chance to progress to the Playoffs if they do well enough. On top of that, there will be a Qualifiers League next season for those teams whom made it through both the Open League and Playoffs, so there is a lot to get excited about! Sign up for the Open League game on November 2nd now.

The Digital Gaming League hosts Insurgency competitive matches and events for around the world. In mid October, the DGL will begin its fifth North American season of 5v5 Firefight. Check out the main site here for more info on sign ups. If you do not have a team please sign up on the looking for team page here. The DGL will also be hosting an international draft tournament to be held in late October/early November. Be sure to watch the Insurgency Reddit for more news. Add DGL administrators Link or Torix for more info. Anyone interested in trying organized competitive play can join up in daily pick up games (PUGs) on the DGL public teamspeak at TS IP -

Oceania Gaming is proud to announce it is hosting the 4th season of competitive Insurgency in Oceania, supported by previous hosts and server provider Insurgency ANZ. If you are interested in competitive Insurgency you can join the Facebook group and find a team willing to take you under their wing. There is also a TeamSpeak server open to the public at ts.oceaniagaming.com ( for pick up games and casual play. You can check out the official website here for information on rules, teams, mods etc.
Community Announcements - Mikee

We are livestreaming today, Saturday October 17th, at 3:00 pm EST testing Insurgency’s upcoming coop mode Conquer. You can watch here.

Conquer is a coop mode that takes the action and fast pace of Checkpoint, but opens up the map for a less linear experience. It’s still in testing stages as you can see on our roadmap under the QA list, but we are ready to have the community try it out with us.

I’ll be streaming today with our AI programmer Adam Sikora, who has been working on Conquer mode as well as nav mesh spawning and improved coop AI. Feel free to download the beta branch and join us in testing the game. Bring your questions regarding the new AI into the chat as well, as Adam will be happy to answer them.

As always, I’ll be happy to answer any questions in the stream about Insurgency.

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